Bad mayo

Who says Hmong refugees aren’t assimilating? They know what to do when middle school students play a bonehead prank, substituting a jar of glue for mayonnaise in the school cafeteria. Claim racial bias and sue!

In a lawsuit filed in Marathon County Circuit Court, parents of the six Hmong children who ate the glue after it was put on sandwiches seek punitive damages for physical and emotional injuries.

. . . Last spring, police and school officials investigated the incident and concluded it had nothing to do with race. The school suspended two white students and one minority student for three days, and police cited the three for disorderly conduct.

The lawsuit, filed Dec. 29, alleges the defendants put the glue on the food table to target Hmong children in the prank. The suit accuses the school district of negligently failing to supervise students and of allowing racial discrimination to occur.

Clearly, the school should ban mayonnaise.

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Comments

  1. They definitely should ban mayonaise. How can we eliminate racism when we’ve got a white condiment being exposed to the children? The cafeteria has become a sort of Bizarro world aversion therapy clinic, in which the students must bow to the white overlord of the condiments if they want to eat. This has the effect of acclimatizing the students to white power by making them associate whiteness with one of our most fundamental life-sustaining activities. And don’t get me started on Miracle Whip!

  2. We should be greatful somebody has not filed suit against “god”…..for allowing that stuff to fall on our planet and placing all of humanity in danger, now that is truly neglience….and what about the brush back pitch in baseball…well that is our national pastime.

  3. ***Julie*** says:

    Jay.. I thought we showed equality in the Cafeteria by letting those yellow mustards and the red Ketchups in on the table. (and don’t get me going on those green relished!)

  4. huffnpuff says:

    Would this be so amusing if you had ingested glue? Basically, some kids tried to poison some other kids, possibly because those other kids were Hmong. They were suspended for 3 days. Kids are kicked out of school for far less. I don’t think that the parents are out of line. Their kids were not the victims of a joke, they were fed toxic substances. I would press criminal charges.

  5. Ricard Brandshaft says:

    I second huffnpuff. And add that the school should be held responsible for not pressing criminal charges.

  6. Yes, the poisoners should be expelled. Should they be charged? For all the good a conviction would do, I’m not sure it would be worth the effort. (That’s the dejected realist in me talking. In principle, I say take that glue & stick the little monsters to a nice bare prison wall for a few years; but one just can’t have that.)

    But does race have anything to do with it at all? That would be very difficult to prove, even if true. Does the motivation even matter? It had better not — unless, by treating the incident as a ‘hate crime’, school officials & the authorities want to send a loud, clear message that it’s OK to poison kids’ food as long as they’re middle-class white Anglos. Treat it as a crime against persons, & leave ethnicity out of it.

  7. I’d be willing to bet race was the motive. But I’m not ready to implement thought policing, so I too think this should be dealt with as a straight poisoning. Hopefully, wood glue isn’t extremely toxic. However, the kids involved wouldn’t have known whether it was or not. It isn’t presented as a food product. I’m no fan of zero tolerance when it comes to doodling pictures of soldiers and such, but I’d throw the book at these kids.

  8. School glue isn’t toxic, and it isn’t a poison. Talk about blowing things out of proportion.

  9. Rita, glue isn’t a food item. It was given to these kids and represented as a food item. If this was done to me or my child, I would have an absolute fit. Some kinds of glue are very toxic. Probably wood glue isn’t, luckily for the Hmong children, because I doubt any of those middle schoolers thought to read the label on the bottle. Yes, absolutely this should be treated as poisoning. It’s only by the grace of God that it wasn’t.

  10. In a school cafeteria, students pick what they get to eat. If six Hmong children pick the sandwiches that were unknowingly made with glue, is this racist? Now, if everyone but the Hmong kids was warned not to take the sandwiches then it was intentional.

  11. Caffeinated Curmudgeon says:

    Unless things have changed a lot, most wood glue used in classrooms is casein and water. It’s rendered from milk curd, like Elmer’s glue.

    The only way Elmer’s is remotely toxic is if you are lactose intolerant or otherwise allergic to milk products.

    And yes, I’ve ingested casein glue in small amounts. Most anybody (especially kids) who has ever worked with it in large quantity has probably done so inadvertantly.

    If I were betting, I’d bet the “toxic” reactions are little more than “Yuck! I can’t believe I ate that!”

  12. If it was wood glue, then they probably came out ahead nutritionally.

    The kids pulled a dumb prank. I’m going to remember the reaction to this story next time a zero-tolerance article pops up on the site. These reactions are just as immoderate. These children didn’t bring a weapon to school, they didn’t beat the snot out of anybody, they didn’t even threaten anybody in an IM. They thought they were being funny. It wasn’t a GOOD choice on their part (so few choices made by middle schoolers ever are).

  13. ***Julie*** says:

    FYI… the link to the article states the following:

    >>Last spring, police and school officials investigated the incident and concluded it had nothing to do with race. The school suspended two white students and one minority student for three days, and police cited the three for disorderly conduct.

  14. The article is annoyingly unspecific as to the actual kind of glue. I rather liked the taste of Elmer’s back around 5th grade… OTOH, if it was the stuff I buy from the lumberyard when I want the joints to be stronger than the boards, there might be something to worry about.

  15. Rita C. said: “The kids pulled a dumb prank. I’m going to remember the reaction to this story next time a zero-tolerance article pops up on the site. These reactions are just as immoderate. These children didn’t bring a weapon to school, they didn’t beat the snot out of anybody, they didn’t even threaten anybody in an IM…”

    I second your motion. They didn’t put Visine or arsenic or something actually harmful in the kids’ food. Heck, I’ve done stuff like this before – when I was at Rose-Hulman, we used to pilfer methyl red and blue from the chem lab all the time and put it in each others’ soda/food/etc. (Both are harmless dyes that change your pee to green/blue or orange/red depending on which one and how much of it you use.) No harm, no foul – the guilty parties were punished and that should be that.

  16. PJ/Maryland says:

    Surely I’m not the first to actually read the article?

    According to Davczyk [Hmong kids’ lawyer], the defendants took a bottle of wood glue from a classroom, swapped the label on it to identify it as mayonnaise and then offered it to the group of Hmong students.

    I’m trying to imagine what sort of glue, and what sort of bottle, could possibly be confused with mayonnaise. Elmer’s white glue, or some sort of white paste, seems most likely. But no one would call either “wood glue”, would they?

    Elmer’s does make a “Carpenter’s Wood Glue”. It looks to be a yellowish-white color. (Why a junior high classroom had carpenter’s glue in it is left to your imagination.) It may be that the Hmong kids were picked as the victims because they wouldn’t realize the bottle shape was wrong, and might believe it was some sort of squeeze mayo.

    The safety sheet says it’s not exactly toxic: “No hazardous ingredients known to company.” and “Not an immediate health hazard.” But the first aid for ingestion says “If accidentally swallowed, dilute by drinking large quantities of water. Immediately contact poison control center or hospital emergency room for any other additional treatment directions.”

    The stuff can’t taste very good, so I wouldn’t think anyone ate much of it. I think a punishment of a week of detention or so is appropriate. I agree with Laura that these kids probably didn’t read the label (as if a typical 8th grader could understand the legal wording used on labels these days!), but I’d give them the benefit of someone else’s foresight and not punish them as though someone got very sick.

    BTW, I found another article on the lawsuit here, which says that the police did cite the three kids for disorderly conduct. (Whatever that means; probably they had to pay a fine.)